The Lethbridge Hurricanes are gearing up for this week's Western Hockey League Bantam Draft.
The Canes have 11 picks in the first 6 rounds, including the second overall selection and three picks in the second round. I spoke with General Manager Brad Robson after the May 1st draft to get an idea as to what might happen.
Hurricanes 2014 Draft Selections
1st Round – 2nd overall
2nd Round – 1st, 6th, 21st (23rd, 28th and 43rd
4th Round – 1st, 12th, 18th (67th, 78th, 84th overall)
– 1st, 10th (89th, 98th overall)
6th Round – 1st, 13th (111th, 123rd
8th Round – 1st, 18th (155th, 172nd overall)
9th Round – 1st
10th Round – 1st (199th overall)
11th Round – 1st (221st
Pat: Brad, you get the second overall pick Thursday. What are you looking for with this selection?
Robson: "Right where we're at right now, there are about three players which have separated themselves from the rest of the draft so we'll just sit back and see what the Brandon Wheat Kings do with the first overall pick. We will select the next best player available and then get ready for the three picks we have in the second round."
Pat: Do you plan on using all three of those second round picks or do you plan on maybe trading one or two? Have you been entertaining any possible trades regarding those?
Robson: "I've had discussions with probably a half dozen teams regarding those picks. We are definitely going to keep our first pick in the second round. That pick is actually number 22 since Portland doesn't have a first round pick, so we are going to keep that selection. We are talking to other teams to see what there is possibly for the other two picks (second round), but if there is nothing then we will keep all those second round picks and essentially have four picks in the top 40."
Pat: This team has an awful lot of high picks in this draft. What are your thoughts on how you might want to proceed overall?
Robson: "You know, with getting a little younger and getting some of these draft picks, like the picks from Portland and Tri-City, Depending on the first overall pick, we will likely select two forwards and two defencemen which will give us lots of depth at that age group. That will allow us with the 4th round pick to maybe make a move with one of those or trade some bodies with picks, so we will just wait and see what happens on Thursday. We have 11 picks in the first 6 rounds. The scouting staff also realizes all these players aren't going to play down the road, so we will be selective with what we do."